What you can recover from your car accident lawsuit is dependent on the facts of your case. While this is true, there are several factors that may impact the amount of compensation you receive. This includes things like your specific injuries, how well you can recuperate, and the negligence of every party involved will all affect the amount of money you can receive.
Damages You Can Recover
One of the first things you should understand is the types of damages that you can recover. These will fall into two basic categories, which are listed here.
Economic damages are tangible things that are fairly easy to quantify and prove. Economic damages include:
- Medical expenses
- Future medical treatment
- Long-term disability
- Lost wages
- Property damages
Unlike the economic damages mentioned above, noneconomic damages won’t come with any type of invoice. Don’t worry though, your attorney can figure out the noneconomic damages you are due based on the facts and evidence related to your case. Some noneconomic damages you may qualify for include:
- Pain and suffering
- Loss of enjoyment of life
- Mental anguish
- Loss of consortium
Will Being At-Fault Affect Your Settlement?
The answer to this question is, “yes.” Florida follows pure comparative fault, which means multiple drivers may be at fault and that the amount of your negligence will proportionally reduce the compensation you receive.
For example, if your damages were determined to be worth $10,000, but you are determined to be 30 percent at fault, then you receive $7,000 in damages (which is 70 percent). With “pure” comparative negligence, it means that the amount of your fault won’t keep you from recovering, as long as you aren’t determined to be 100 percent at-fault.
Additional Factors That Can Affect Your Claim’s Value
There’s no limit to how many other factors can come into play and reduce or increase the total amount of the compensation you are able to receive. Some of the most common factors that will affect the value of your claim include:
- Your injuries: The longer it takes to recover from your injuries, the higher your settlement will be.
- Your current salary: The more you make, and miss out on making while recovering, results in higher settlements being offered.
- Recovery time: Someone who recovers in two years will receive more than someone who recovers in just three months.
- Driver’s behavior: How you act can impact what type of settlement you receive. Also, if one driver has a history of DUI or even several accidents in their past, this can also impact the compensation you receive.
- What you have said after the accident: Never say you are sorry or take the blame, as this can be used to reduce your settlement, even if it isn’t true.
If the insurer makes the argument that you were 100 percent at-fault for the accident or that you didn’t suffer any injuries, at all, it may be able to deny or significantly reduce the settlement you receive.
Hire an Attorney for Help
There’s no reason to risk leaving money on the table. If you decide to handle your accident claim alone, you may miss out on thousands of dollars that you deserve for the accident and injuries you suffered. If you need help with your case, contact Zimmet & Zimmet by calling (386) 255-6400.